Case Study

JT Pickfords

Date
May 2014

Service
eCommerce

Magento-powered eCommerce development for online premier bathroom retailer, JT Pickfords.

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We are proud of our working relationship alongside online premier bathroom retailer JT Pickfords for over 8 years.

The initial relationship began when JT Pickfords approached us to utilise our digital consultancy services. Now Reach cover all aspects of their design and marketing projects.

Around 6 years ago, JT Pickfords made the brave decision to restructure their business. A huge step to evolve from a historical high street based retailer to an online marketplace leader.

As a result we worked alongside JT Pickfords to create an all-in-one eCommerce solution powered by Magento that fulfilled their business needs and provided a healthy return on investment.

JT Pickfords Online Retailer

The initial brief was to create an all-in-one eCommerce solution that would both suit the new business model whilst also improving the way the business sold it’s products online. This integrates seamlessly with the existing ERP system that was being used within the warehouse and distribution centre that houses all the products the business sells, from simple taps to complex bathroom furniture packs. The ecommerce platform also utilises existing payment gateways that the business uses to accept payments and feed that data back to the ERP system.

Alongside all the technical aspects of the project, the user interface harmonises the brand identity of the business, complimenting its inception in 1964. We began with some simple UI and UX research, looking into the homecare industry and how other businesses were working successfully and implementing methods to help JT Pickfords get up onto a level playing field with it’s competitors, and ultimately passing them.

Key challenges

The challenges we overcame when building the initial solution were pretty complex. Successfully integrating with existing systems the business utilises across other aspects of their workflow, such as the ERP system which controls all of their stock, customers, sales orders and key product information such as UDAs. The solution required SOAP XML to allow the two APIs to work simultaneously. The initial build phase saw months of tests and re-configuration of these connections to enable automated updating. The results ensured that they would display the delivery methods chosen by the customer.

The biggest obstacle in this was the use of product ‘packs’. A pack is a group of smaller single items bundled together to create a ‘pack’. These are not stock controlled products as the stock count is determined by the smaller single items that it contains. As a result, the solution was to create a bespoke Magento product type, to synchronise the products successfully.

The results

After the initial development, the end result was a huge success and the site has seen continued growth since. Along the way we have worked on various updates and upgrades. Some of which include finance integrations, advanced analytics integrations, server migration, custom cache scripts and much more. We are currently in the process of building a brand new Magento 2 platform for the business. Finally a complex data migration from the existing site to the new one, which is no mean feat! Keep your eyes peeled for the case study!

Does Magento sound like the right platform for your next project? Get in touch with us today and let us help you start your next project.

View the JT Pickfords website.